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The Astell and Kern AK240 Impressions Thread - Page 61

post #901 of 2226

Well, I've been away from this thread for awhile due to moving, but I thought I'd provide an update. First, my new 240 is working perfectly (my original had a problem with a skitish volume control that was confirmed by iriver as being defective). I have over 400 hours on it and it now sounds like my old one ... utterly fantastic. Burn-in is critical for the 240 to sound its best. My new cable from DHC came in which allows me to connect my LCD-XCs to the balanced output. I put another 100 hours on my setup before I did any critical listening.

 

What I am noticing using the balanced output is a more organic sounding bass. What I mean by this is the bass is no longer one note in variety, rather, a breathing, more detailed bass. There are better micro/macro dynamics now which make the low end more involving, even startling at times. Additionally, the soundstage has improved in terms of front to back depth, not as much laterally. Please remember I have closed back headphones, so the lateral soundstage is not going to be as wide as an open-eared design, at least in my experience. This may account for my perception about improvements in soundstage width.

 

I'm still trying to pin down the differences in other areas since I haven't used my setup for 3 weeks due to my moving and to all the burn-in time. I'll report back more as I get a better handle on the midrange and upper frequencies, but my quick assessment is the new cable/balanced out change has elevated the sound on my XCs about 15%—not a bad return on my $250 investment.

 

All in all, I'm even more happy—thrilled, in fact—with my setup.

 

Incidentally, I just heard from Ted at teds headfood that the new cases for the 240 are going to retail for $80.

post #902 of 2226

Oh, and by the way, I like using my 240 completely naked, not even screen or back protection. There is a tactile quality to the 240 that enhances its enjoyment. Of course, I sometimes fret about accidentally dropping my unit, but I tend to be very careful with my hifi components—anal even—so I trust I will never regret my decision. :D

post #903 of 2226
Quote:
Originally Posted by jwbrent View Post
 

Oh, and by the way, I like using my 240 completely naked, not even screen or back protection. There is a tactile quality to the 240 that enhances its enjoyment. Of course, I sometimes fret about accidentally dropping my unit, but I tend to be very careful with my hifi components—anal even—so I trust I will never regret my decision. :D

 

You took off the screen protectors that came on the unit by default?

post #904 of 2226

yes.

post #905 of 2226
Quote:
Originally Posted by jwbrent View Post

yes.
Just emailed Ted, about a new case.
post #906 of 2226

I need to update my avatar to reflect that I don't use the case. That picture was taken the week I got my 240 and purple heart XCs.

post #907 of 2226
Quote:
Originally Posted by kh600rr View Post


Just emailed Ted, about a new case.

 

I like the blue one. Did you get your new Nobles yet?

post #908 of 2226
Quote:
Originally Posted by jwbrent View Post

I like the blue one. Did you get your new Nobles yet?
K-10's are still a few weeks out, just ordered the Whiplash TWau Reference , gold plated silver cable, terminated for the AK-240. Yeah the blue case is real sharp.
post #909 of 2226
Quote:
Originally Posted by jwbrent View Post
 

Oh, and by the way, I like using my 240 completely naked, not even screen or back protection. There is a tactile quality to the 240 that enhances its enjoyment. Of course, I sometimes fret about accidentally dropping my unit, but I tend to be very careful with my hifi components—anal even—so I trust I will never regret my decision. :D

 

Did you take off BOTH layers?  If I am not mistaken, the AK240 ships with 2 layers of protectors on both sides.  I think there is another layer of protectors underneath the layer with the tabs.  I took a closer look at mine and it definitely looks like another set underneath on mine.   This is consistent with iriver's practice with earlier AK products.

post #910 of 2226
Quote:
Originally Posted by angelo898 View Post
 

i actually dont have one, just thinking about whether itd be a good idea to get both the mod and the original at the same time

I'd go for the mod if RWA can change the 2.5mm balance to the main 3.5mm and that would make a lot of sense to me.

post #911 of 2226
Sadly he is creating a balanced 3.5mm for amp out
post #912 of 2226
Quote:
Originally Posted by angelo898 View Post

Sadly he is creating a balanced 3.5mm for amp out

:(

post #913 of 2226
Another issue is that most of the description seems to relate to more powerful headphones, but I will probably only use IEMs with the ak240 so I'm not sure if there would be any point to the mod
post #914 of 2226
Quote:
Originally Posted by angelo898 View Post

Another issue is that most of the description seems to relate to more powerful headphones, but I will probably only use IEMs with the ak240 so I'm not sure if there would be any point to the mod

Same here. Primarily using IEM and very little time on headphones.  

 

Mod is somehow irrelevant to me as I don't want to void the warranty especially for an electronic as expensive as the AK240.

post #915 of 2226

Just got mines today along with a Fiio X5 I got a few days ago and I was surprised there's not a high gain option as I have to bring my volume up to about 60/75 steps to reach comfortable listening levels on my HD 800 (Although with high gain on the X5, volume is at about 90/120). The MQS Streaming implementation is well done and every easy to use so far. The load time of the device so far is a lot longer than the Fiio X5 as the X5 loads in about 1/3rd the time of the AK240. I've been listening to it for a couple of hours but I'll talk about the sound aspect of it a bit later.

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